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Founded in February and spearheaded by IBM and Microsoft, WS-I is intended to be an open industry effort to promote Web services interoperability across platforms, applications, and programming languages. But Sun, despite having invented the leading deployment platform for Web services, Java, had previously been shut out of the WS-I effort.
Now that recently approved WS-I by-laws make it possible for Sun to become a board member, the company is signing up.
"From day one, we've been supportive of WS-I and the work they're doing with interoperability. That hasn't been the issue. Our issue has been the governance model that has not allowed Sun to participate in WS-I," said Ed Julson, Sun group marketing manager for Web services standards and technologies.
"I think we're a credible player in the industry. We have a long history of innovation in the standards arena and driving network computing," Julson said.
Sun intends to promote Web services standards at organisations such as the World Wide Web Consortium and then align that work on converged standards with WS-I profiles, Julson said.
"Over the past six to eight months, Web services standards has completely exploded in terms of complexity so we have a situation now where we have this tremendous number of specifications [which] in many cases are overlapping. We have to reduce this complexity and [merge] the overlapping specifications," said Julson.
BEA Systems, IBM, Oracle, and WS-I, in prepared statements released by Sun, welcomed Sun to the organisation. Sun's press release on its joining WS-I did not include a comment from Microsoft.